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Swatch profits dip

Omega is one the brands owned by Swatch Group (Swatch Group) swatch group

Swatch Group, the world's biggest watchmaker, has reported a two per cent drop in profit in 2002 to SFr494 million ($358 million).

This content was published on March 27, 2003 - 09:12

Issuing its annual figures on Thursday, Swatch said that despite a difficult economic climate and the strong franc, it had retained its position as the industry leader.

Sales were slightly down on the year before, at SFr632 million (SFr644 million in 2001), but in local currency terms they rose by 2.6 per cent in the second half, and by 1.1 per cent for the year as a whole, Swatch said.

The maker of the Omega, Calvin Klein and Swatch brands said it was confident for the year ahead and was proposing a ten per cent increase in its dividend.

"The portfolio of Swatch Group watch brands reported a well-balanced and positive trend in 2002," the Biel-based company said in a statement.

"All the major brands achieved growth in local currency terms and won market share."

Confident

Swatch said improved profitability in the second half was attributable mainly to the group's product mix and to cost-cutting efforts.

"The Swatch Group is confident for the current year," the statement said. "The operating result for the first few months points to an encouraging growth trend."

However, the company said that given the current economic situation it could make no precise forecast of profit and sales for the current year.

swissinfo with agencies

Swatch summary

Swatch reported a two per cent drop in profit to SFr494 million ($358 million) in 2002.
Sales fell slightly, but expressed in local currency terms increased by 1.1 per cent during the year.
Swatch Group said it would propose a ten per cent increase in its dividend.
Swatch Group owns the Swatch, Omega and Calvin Klein brands.

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